Blocking a Needlepoint Project

When stitching is complete, almost every needlepoint canvas needs blocking to restore it to the original shape. Commercial blocking is costly, so try to do it yourself. Not only will you save money, you’ll also do a professional job by following these step-by-step instructions.

  1. Cut a piece of brown wrapping paper to exactly the size your finished work should be. Place the paper on a padded board on top of a drawing board or an old table.

  2. Place the finished needlepoint piece facedown on the paper. If the piece has been worked with raised stitches, block right side up.

  3. Dampen lightly using a spray bottle or mister filled with cold water plus a few drops of vinegar to prevent any running of yarn colors.

  4. Square off and secure the four corners with rustproof pins or tacks through the bare edge of the canvas (never through the stitched area).

  5. Place additional pins or tacks about 1" (2.5cm) apart in a straight line along each edge of the canvas, pulling the needlepoint into shape as you go.

  6. Do not remove canvas until it is thoroughly dry. If the piece is still somewhat warped after you unpin the canvas, reblock it again.